TODAY IN HISTORY. May 7, 1999. During the Kosovo War, when NATO had begun its offense and began airstrikes on targets in Serbia, five US bombs hit the Chinese Embassy in Belgrade, killing three, wounding twenty, and sparking massive protests in China, calling the bombing campaign illegal. The reasons claimed for this action, according to the CIA, was the use of outdated maps, where there was no embassy pictured—only a warehouse, which is why then-President Bill Clinton authorized the strike in the first place. It is still unclear, however, whether NATO leaders themselves approved the strike or not. Alongside that, someone who had been briefed by officials published an account stating that he had been told, “the embassy and a Yugoslav arms factory look very similar” and were merely meters apart.
Photo: outraged Chinese citizens protest the bombing outside the US Embassy.